How to Make Money in Quarantine

posted in: Personal Finance

You’re stuck at home and work is drying up. Now what? It’s time to get creative about how to make money in quarantine.


Use your skills

Do you have a skill that doesn’t involve in-person contact, like graphic design, illustrating or editing? Use platforms, like Fiverr or Graphite to look for opportunities, or start your own business. A good way to get things off the ground is by starting with your social network. Connect with people on LinkedIn, reach out to business friends on Facebook, or post about your availability in your local Facebook group.


Teach with technology

Do you teach? Since many of us are self-isolating, virtual instruction has become a way to connect with people. Universities and K-12 schools are doing it – why shouldn’t you?  Even if you’re accustomed to teaching in person, you can tweak your lessons to teach virtually using platforms, like via Zoom, Facetime, or Skype. Music classes, fitness instruction, and tutoring can all be done this way.


Earn while you shop

While many of us will be pulling back on our shopping for financial reasons – which I strongly advise – we still have to buy things. I talk about ways to save money all the time, but you can also earn money while you shop. CouponCabin, one of my favorite deal sites, allows you to earn up to 20% cash back at over 3,500 partner stores. Just log in, click a coupon link or Shop Now button for a participating store, and shop as you normally would. They also have a browser extension called Sidekick, which will allow you to earn as you shop. During the COVID-19 crisis, they have committed to waiving their own commissions from retailers, allowing you to earn even more. And they’re making sure you get your payments even faster than usual.



Browser Extensions That Save You Money

Best Money-Saving Apps


Take surveys, test products and provide feedback

This is a fun way to earn a little extra cash, but it’s more like spending money, rather than money to pay the rent. The L’Oreal Consumer Testing Bureau and Pink Panel provide opportunities to test beauty products for free products and cash. And then there are companies, like Advanced Opinions (aka OA Groups) offer surveys you can complete for cash or gift cards.  G2 is another one that I discovered recently. You can complete reviews of specific tech platforms, like Zoom or Dropbox, in exchange for Amazon gift cards.


Watch movies and videos

Get paid for watching videos including movie trailers and celebrity videos using a site like Swagbucks. You’ll earn “bucks” for watching and you can redeem those bucks for gift cards or payment via Paypal.


Make referrals

There are probably services you use and love that offer YOU money to recommend them to your friends. Some are more generous than others. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Worthy helps people sell their unwanted gemstones and precious metals – this is great if you have pieces from a former marriage or estate jewelry that is not to your taste. For every person you refer who sells an item with Worthy, you’ll receive an Amazon gift card for $75.
  • Refer a friend to DNA site 23andMe and receive an Amazon gift card valued at up to $20. Your friend will receive up to 10 percent off their order.
  • Online wholesale club will give you $15 for every new customer who places an order of $60 or more and the people you refer will get $15 off their first order as well. 
  • We’re all ordering more takeout and will give you and the person you refer $10 each!
  • For more, visit my blog post on the topic.


Sell random junk around your house


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Trae Bodge is an accomplished lifestyle journalist and TV commentator who has specialized in smart shopping, personal finance, and retail for more than a decade. She has appeared on TV over 1,000 times; including Today Show, GMA3, NBC Nightly News, Inside Edition, and network affiliates nationwide. She has been named a Top Voice in Retail by LinkedIn, and her expert commentary has appeared in Forbes,, Kiplinger, Yahoo Finance, and numerous others.